Sidmouth’s Connaught Gardens in running to become UK’s favourite park

Sidmouth Connaught Gardens. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 3962-25-12AW. To order your copy of this

Sidmouth Connaught Gardens. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 3962-25-12AW. To order your copy of this photograph, go to and click on myphotos24 - Credit: Archant

Sidmouth residents have the chance to vote and give the town’s much-loved gardens the recognition they deserve

Sidmouth’s ‘jewel in the crown’ Connaught Gardens is being championed in a competition to find the UK’s favourite park.

The much-loved site is up against Exmouth’s Manor Gardens, after both held on to their coveted Green Flag status and gained automatic entry into the People’s Choice Award 2014.

Now, organisers are urging people to show their support and vote for their favourite park.

Cllr Iain Chubb, the East Devon District Council’s (EDDC) cabinet member for the environment, said: “I am extremely proud of our gardening staff who work so hard in all weathers to provide our towns with the gardens and floral displays that give East Devon the wow factor.

“To continue winning this award against a backdrop of reduced funding is indeed an impressive achievement,” he added.

The gardens, still in their original 1930s form, are treasured by locals and visitors alike and offer something for everyone, from weird and wonderful exotic plant collections, to award-winning bedding displays and stunning views of the Jurassic Coast.

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A vibrant al fresco venue, the gardens play host to many different activities and events, including music, theatre and art exhibitions.

Throughout the summer, a band is often entertaining audiences from the bandstand.

Cllr Chubb encouraged people in Sidmouth to use this opportunity to tell the nation how much they value their local parks and green spaces.

The Green Flag Award was first launched in 1996 to recognise and reward the UK’s best green spaces.

It recognises well-managed, high-quality sites that meet the needs of the community and sets the standard across the UK.

Paul Todd, Green Flag Award scheme manager, said: “Following a record breaking year for the Green Flag Award, we are now asking the public to decide which of the 1,482 parks and green spaces deserves the People’s Choice Award 2014.”

Voting will close at midday on September 30 and the winner will be announced on October, 16.

There is no need to register to vote, just go to: